San Francisco -- In an apparent move to more closely knit its social media outlets, Google owned video sharing outfit YouTube is trying to clean up its comments section by encouraging its members to start using their real names instead of the descriptive monikers many used when they launched a channel by connecting to Google+.
Well, the online video hub YouTube has now finally takes a swipe at nasty commenter's and cleans up its image by encouraging users to use their real names and link to their Google+ profile. Surely, maybe you are not the type to leave an embarrassingly awful comment anyway, but a legion of YouTube users certainly are.
As a matter of fact, YouTube thinks that maybe all those cutepuppies99 and origamiboys1981 might be ready to grow up. Google's online video platform is now giving users the option to start using their real names on its service, along with hooking up their Google Plus profile up with their YouTube channel.
“One Google-wide identity was something that proved popular with new YouTube users when we began offering it in March, so we are now extending it to existing users,” YouTube software engineer John Fisher wrote in a recent blog post.
“Starting today we are giving you the ability to change how you appear on YouTube, with the option to use your Google+ profile on your YouTube channel,” Fisher wrote in the YouTube blog.
Going froward, when a YouTube user now tries to comment on a video, a box pops up asking that person to start using their “full name” at the video sharing platform. The “full name” is taken from the person's Google+ account since Google requires the real name of someone signing up for a Google+ account.
However, Google is offering some option to decline using your real name. Once the “start using your full name” box appears, you can refuse to start using your real name. If you do that, another pop up appears asking you to justify your decision.
Choices offered by Google include:
Eventually, this means if your current YouTube user name is joeysam87, you can now appear as Joey Sampson -- the full name from your Google+ profile, complete with the space in between. YouTube will also use any photo that you have uploaded.
On the other hand, if you prefer not to include your real name with some comments you have made in the past on videos for whatever reason, you can review your content to peek through every video, comment or playlist you have ever posted and decide whether or not to tie it to your true identity before making the switch.
“This will give you more options for how your videos are seen and discovered on YouTube,” Fisher wrote. “However, we realize that using your full name is not for everyone. Maybe people know you by your YouTube user name. Perhaps you do not want your name publicly associated with your channel.”
A Google screenshot featuring Joey Samson, formerly known as joeysam87, showing how to change from an anonymous YouTube account to a Google+ account. (Credit: YouTube)
In fact, just last month Google revealed at its developers conference that it was working on improvements in YouTube's comments section. So this latest development could be just an initial step in a longer strategy leading to a vast reduction of anonymous comments on YouTube.
Nevertheless, such a reduction could take some liveliness out of the offering, but it could improve the site's appeal to businesses, which could contribute to Google's bottom line.